Food

Can Dogs Have Kefir? How Good Is It?

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Author: Jacob Kay

Being a pet parent is not easy, it requires constant prep and fully equipped knowledge. Pet parents are always on a constant spree to find the best suitable and consumable products for their fur babies, especially fermented products.

Can Dogs Have Kefir?

Theirs always a myth associated with fermented products, as they are made from dairy products and fermented. Kefir is one such fermented drink, which has a lot of health benefits associated with it, but is it healthy for your dog too? As it is a fermented milk drink how can it be good for dogs? And the questions continue.

In this article, we will provide you with all necessary information regarding kefir and its effect on your dog.

What Is Kefir?

Kefir is a fermented milk drink. Kefir is made by adding kefir grains to milk and letting it ferment. During the fermentation process, the lactose present in milk is destroyed by the bacteria by producing carbon dioxide[1].

This carbon dioxide further breaks the lactose into lactic acid, giving it a thick curd-like consistency. Due to the gas released by this bacteria during fermentation, kefir tastes like carbonate and is quite tangy.

As the lactose present in milk is destroyed, it makes kefir even more consumable for lactose-intolerant dogs. Kefir can even be made using goat milk, almond milk, and dairy-free products like oats, coconut milk and even rice.

Is Kefir Safe for Dogs?

Yes, kefir is absolutely safe for dogs. It contains probiotics which are widely known as good bacteria. Probiotics are a great source to maintain a healthy balance of gut microbes. They are also useful in maintaining the health of the digestive system.

Kefir are good source of vitamins, and minerals and is low fat, which makes it a good nourishing supplement for your dog. They are proven to strengthen the immune system and fight allergies too.

As quoted in webmd, "A healthy balance of bacteria is important for healthy dogs. Probiotics for dogs have benefits that can help your dog digest food, make and absorb vitamins and minerals, and keep a strong immune system."

Benefits of Kefir for Your Dog

Here are some health benefits of kefir for your dog:

Benefits of Kefir for Your Dog

Probiotic:

kefir is a good source of probiotics, it contains a variety of yeasts and bacteria, which are helpful in maintaining the gut health of your dog. Especially for dogs suffering from yeast infection, kefir is very useful to stop the yeast overgrowth[2].

Nutrition:

kefir is loaded with vitamins B2, and B12, calcium, protein, magnesium, and a wide amount of bioactive compounds. It helps in absorption of fat, vitamins and minerals. It also consists of organic acid and peptides, thus helpful in the overall development of your dog.

Antibacterial:

kefir stops the growth of harmful bacteria like salmonella, E coli and Helicobacter pylori. 70% of the immune system of a dog is based on its gut health. Thus kefir by stopping harmful bacteria promotes the gut health of dogs.

Risks of Kefir for Your Dog

Risks of Kefir for Your Dog

Normally there are no potential risks associated with kefir. Despite this, some dogs may suffer from diarrhoea, nausea and vomiting if it is consumed in large quantities. If you are introducing kefir first time to your dog’s diet you need to be careful as it might not suit your dog. But gradually as your dog will be habitual to it, even this problem will no longer exist.

FAQs

Should I give my dog kefir every day?

Yes, you can give your dog kefir every day. Kefir contains probiotics, vitamins and minerals. Kefir being low in lactose is even consumable by dogs who are lactose intolerant. Although it can be given daily, you should provide it in moderate quantity to your dog.

Can kefir cause yeast infections in dogs?

No, kefir cannot cause yeast infections in dogs on the contrary it is good for dogs suffering from yeast infection. Kefir being loaded with various yeast, stops the yeast overgrowth. If your dog is suffering from yeast infection, kefir is a good source to include in his regular diet.

Can kefir make my dog sick?

Usually, kefir is safe for dogs and has no side effects. But there are rare chances that your dog may experience nausea, and bloating when you first introduce kefir to diet. However, these side effects may also end once your dog is habitual to regular kefir consumption.

Is kefir good for dogs with allergies?

Yes, kefir is good for dogs with allergies. It not only fights allergies but also regulates the kidneys and liver. It is really beneficial for dogs suffering for a dog suffering from allergies as it is rich in probiotics and minerals.

Is Kefir better than Yoghurt?

Yes, kefir is better than yoghourt. Kefir contains more probiotics and is fermented for longer periods as compared to yoghurt. Kefir has a variety of yeast and is good for the digestion process too.

Conclusion

Kefir has many health benefits and is suitable for dog consumption is a favourite choice of pet parents. However, you should avoid feeding it in large quantities to your dog. Overfeeding kefir can cause these health benefits will turn into a reason for discomfort for your dog. To provide your dog with the maximum benefit of kefir, try to introduce it in small quantities in your dog’s food.

Reference:

  1. Veterinary researchers find that drinking kefir may help lower blood pressure – Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine. (2022, May 9). Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine.
  2. The power of probiotics. (2023, May 5). Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine.
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About
Jacob Kay
Jacob Kay is a Veterinary Advisor and Editor at WWD. He’s also a dog lover and has two pet dogs of his own. He has extensive knowledge in the field of veterinary medicine and is always happy to share his insights with others.

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